The Rapidian

GVSU signs lease at Downtown Market

Grand Rapids Downtown Market welcomes Grand Valley State University as their newest tenant.

/Courtesy of Grand Rapids Downtown Market

Underwriting support from:


Grand Rapids Downtown Market

435 Ionia Avenue SW


/Eric Tank

/Eric Tank

Grand Rapids Downtown Market, an all-new destination for local food innovation, education and experimentation, announced that Grand Valley State University has signed on to lease space from the Market.

Grand Valley faculty and students working on food and nutrition, as well as other health and community-related projects, plan to use the 350-square-foot space for outreach and collaborative research beginning in 2014. Grand Valley will start build-out of the space on the Market’s south side immediately, with completion expected early next year.

“The Downtown Market’s vibrant business venue and its proximity to the Heartside neighborhood offer Grand Valley important opportunities for community-based teaching, research and programming,” says Jon Jellema, associate vice president for Academic Affairs. “We are excited about the possibilities of developing mutually beneficial partnerships with market vendors, other tenants and neighborhood groups.”

The Downtown Market will bring faculty and students in closer proximity to local chefs and food artisans.

“We are thrilled Grand Valley is joining the Downtown Market, as health and nutrition education is a core part of our mission,” says Mimi Fritz, president and CEO of the Downtown Market. “Students and faculty working and researching at the Market will bring energy and additional foot traffic to the space, and we’re eager to see what sort of partnerships arise between the vendors and tenants.”

The Downtown Market, opened in August, is 138,000 square feet of fresh produce, artisan food, local farms, education and entertainment. The Market’s second floor contains more than 16,500 square feet of education space including classrooms and an incubator kitchen. The overall vision of the Downtown Market is to promote healthy lifestyles, become the anchor for a new, Market District within the Heartside neighborhood, and to serve as a community-gathering place that reflects the diversity and creativity of Grand Rapids and southwest Michigan.

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